Plastic Surgery Trends in Canada
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Plastic Surgery Trends In Canada
In the past decade or two, the plastic surgery industry has broadened and shifted to become the ‘cosmetic procedure’ industry. This is largely due to the wider availability of minimally invasive cosmetic procedures that help turn back the clock on the appearance of aging without going under the knife. Of course, many patients still opt for traditional plastic surgery, too – particularly if they are seeking more extensive or definitive results. Even these procedures, however, have undergone an evolution of sorts thanks to new advancements in surgical technology.
Better and more natural-looking results are driving more and more people to the plastic surgeon’s office for aesthetic treatments. Although there are no ‘official’ statistics tracking the number of cosmetic surgeries and procedures in Canada, the numbers are likely comparable to those of the U.S., adjusted for the difference in population size. For example, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) reports that there were 15.9 million cosmetic procedures performed in the U.S. in 2015. By those numbers, we can estimate that there were approximately 1.59 million procedures performed in Canada that same year, since Canada has a population size equivalent to about one-tenth of the U.S. population. For reference, that is a 115 percent increase over the year 2000.
Many patients are interested in restoring a more youthful look with a full range of dermal fillers, and wait longer to undergo a surgical facelift procedure. Achieving a fresh, more youthful look without surgery is an appealing option to patients noticing the early signs of facial aging in wrinkles, fine lines, and creases.
Laser Treatments and Microneedling
A full range of advanced lasers are available to plastic surgeons, with systems to treat the signs of aging, uneven skin texture and tone, or treat those who suffer with acne breakouts. Plastic surgeons who offer various types of laser treatments are finding these procedures to be gaining in popularity, particularly treatments for improving the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, creases, and other signs of aging. Certain laser techniques work to stimulate the natural growth of collagen, and patients can restore a firmer, more supple skin quality. Microneedling systems are coming to the market that perform better than earlier versions, and many patients are interested in treatments with a pen version to target specific areas of the face.
Breast Implant Trends
Newer saline breast implants are now on the market, producing a more natural-looking appearance and feel than in the past. Many patients are interested in these newer saline options due to fears about risks associated with silicone. While silicone implants are known for having a more natural feel, the newer structured saline versions feel softer and more like natural breast tissue. These new saline implants have a youthful shape and contour, a lower rate of capsular contracture, and require a smaller incision – all important benefits that patients appreciate.
Silicone implants have also become more realistic in appearance and are more effective due to a textured surface and newer shapes that better mimic natural breast tissue. Many women are unhappy with their breast size, but are now requesting the latest versions due to the more natural appearance they produce. Silicone implants are now available that contain micro-spheres throughout the silicone. The tiny spheres are hollow and the implants are lighter, decreasing the stress on natural tissue – an advantage for women who engage in vigorous physical activities.
A Shift to Less Invasive Techniques for Body Enhancement
One new trend is an increase in the numbers of requests for fat transfer procedures. Canadians tend to be health-focused, and enhancements for lips, cheeks, breasts, buttocks, and hands through a fat transfer procedure is considered a healthier, safer option.
While breast augmentation remains a popular cosmetic treatment, the trend is shifting towards an increase in requests for buttock enhancement procedures, with many patients interested in a Brazilian Butt Lift, a fat transfer procedure that continues to gain interest in patients across Canada who want to create a more voluptuous appearance or resolve an unbalanced body contour.
Body Sculpting Trends
Traditional fat removal through liposuction remains popular, and newer lipo techniques are producing smoother, more attractive results than earlier methods. Many patients are leery of liposuction due to the invasive nature of the procedure, and are looking towards achieving results with one of the latest generation of non-invasive body sculpting technologies. Freezing the fat away while the body naturally sheds the fat cells is gaining in popularity. Patients must be willing to wait longer for the effects to be visible, with final results in about three months. With new body sculpting technology now available, patients are requesting these procedures above traditional body lifts. The results are comparable for many patients who want to lose several inches of unwanted fat in specific body areas. As the procedure involves no surgery and little-to-no downtime, requests for non-surgical fat reducing procedures are at an all-time high.
Generally, for plastic surgeons in Canada, the more advanced systems and treatments you offer, particularly non-surgical, non-invasive treatments, the more patients you will attract. Adding medspa services is also a growing trend for plastic surgeons across the nation.
Plastic Surgery Trends In Canada
Since the popularity of cosmetic procedures continues to rise, it makes since that changes and advancements in technique and technology would have a significant influence on the types of procedures and techniques used in operating rooms and surgeon offices across the country. From Toronto to Ottawa and Vancouver to Calgary, surgeons have a greater understanding of the body’s anatomy and the processes that take place during and following a cosmetic procedure.
Minimally-Invasive and Non-Invasive Treatments
In Canada, it is the minimally invasive procedures that are demanding so much attention. For years, Botox has been used to rejuvenate the facial appearance and freeze the muscles responsible for causing lines and wrinkles. Millions of people in Toronto and other urban, suburban, and even rural areas are turning to Botox to freeze time in place and prevent the appearance of aging.
Although Botox leads the list for minimally invasive cosmetic treatments, dermal fillers are a close second – even ahead of chemical peels and laser hair removal. There are several dermal fillers used in Canada for the purpose of adding volume to the face – particularly the cheeks and lips. In fact, many patients are requesting what is being called the ‘Liquid Facelift’, which is essentially a combination of a neuromodulator like Botox or Dysport and a dermal filler like Juvaderm. Together, these substances can be used to fill in fine lines, reduce the appearance of wrinkles, lift the cheeks, reduce sagging, and provide more structure to the face. It is a non-surgical way of achieving similar results to a facelift without going under the knife. Some patients are even opting for the more permanent volumizing procedures that involve the direct injection of fat into the lips, cheeks, and sometimes the hands.
Another area that is getting attention is non-surgical body contouring. This area of cosmetic treatment is especially reliant upon emerging technologies, as it targets and freezes fat cells, ultimately causing them to die and be eliminated by the body. Not only does this minimize down time and eliminate the need for incisions, but it can nearly rival the results achieved by traditional liposuction in some cases. Non-surgical body contouring still has room to evolve, but more and more people are already using it to target stubborn fat on the belly and other areas of the body.
Rhinoplasty – The Piezo Technique
For more than 100 years, the hammer and chisel technique has been the primary method used by surgeons around the globe to reshape the bony structure of the nose. As archaic as it may seem, this is still common practice in operating rooms across Canada and the U.S., which typically leads to major bruising and a black-and-blue appearance around the eyes following a rhinoplasty.
Now, a new trend in nose surgery is emerging. It’s called the Piezo Technique, and it features a 21st-century technology that uses ultra-high frequency vibration to cut through the bony structures of the nose with great precision and stop automatically when the device comes in contact with soft tissues. This is a much gentler method that causes less bleeding and post-surgical bruising. Furthermore, it also provides greater control over the procedure, less room for error, and more predictable results. Often, patients return to work in as little as seven days after surgery – much less than the time off necessary after a standard, traditional rhinoplasty.
Cultural Trends in Cosmetic Procedures
Canadian plastic surgery trends are largely contingent upon the cultural preferences throughout the country. Though there is no specific data to reference for Canada, trends are often similar to those in the U.S., where breast augmentation remains the number one requested cosmetic surgery. That is followed by liposuction, eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty), rhinoplasty, and tummy tucks.
However, the notable changes have come in the heightened requests for augmentations and lifts involving the buttocks. Though these are not new procedures, the rapidly rising numbers suggest a cultural shift toward a preference for higher, rounder, and fuller derrieres. Overall, requests for buttock lifts and buttock implants soared by 36 percent between 2014 and 2015 alone. In Canada, some surgeons are even utilizing technology that allows for auto-infusion of large volumes of fat into the buttock, making it easier for the surgeon to sculpt a more desirable shape.
Future Trends in Plastic Surgery
In the future, it is possible that the post-surgical recovery phase will see big changes, too. By recognizing that the healing process is a complex cellular process, researchers and surgeons now better understand the role growth factors play in post-surgical recovery. Though the research is still in its early stages, it is possible that Canadian plastic surgeons will one day be able to provide therapeutic interventions that will accelerate the healing process after surgery.